A survey by communications firm duke+mir ahead of COP28 has found that 75 percent of people in the UAE think humans will find technology to solve global warming. The poll of more than 1,000 people through YouGov was commissioned by duke+mir as part of a research paper entitled ‘Environment Action in the UAE’.
However, the research also revealed some areas of concern for environmental action groups, as 52 percent of UAE residents felt climate change was inevitable.
Mir Murtaza Khurshid, Co-Founder and Partner at duke+mir said, “People in the UAE are convinced that humanity will find a way to overcome the impacts of climate change. Now is the time for individuals to do their part. In the Year of Sustainability, COP28 is a generational opportunity to raise greater awareness of climate change and support the UAE to achieve its Net Zero 2050 vision.”
The duke+mir report includes insight from Fatma Abdulla Ibrahim Al Khayat, Urban Planning Specialist at Abu Dhabi Executive Office. She said that the design of cities can help encourage individuals to take positive action. “The biggest challenge that cities face at a global scale is climate change. This highlights the significance of implementing measures that reduce the impact on the environment when planning and building urban areas, encompassing even small-scale interventions such as implementing effective urban recycling practices to incorporating urban greenery in streetscapes and buildings.”
Another positive key finding of duke+mir’s public survey was that half of UAE residents recycle regularly, while also showing there is an opportunity to drive awareness and engage the remaining proportion of the population to participate. When compared to the UK where nine out of 10 people frequently recycle waste, it demonstrates that individuals within the UAE could be doing a bit more to help the planet. The UAE is already in the top 50 countries in the world for waste recycling with around a quarter of waste already recycled according to research by Yale and Columbia University for the Environmental Performance Index. In 2018, the UAE set out a goal to recycle 75% of waste, which was further supported by the UAE Circular Economy Policy 2021-2031, aiming to move towards reducing the amount of waste that ends up in landfill.
Khurshid added, “UAE leaders have set clear targets to create a sustainable circular economy in the coming years. Now residents have an opportunity to follow this example and take more positive action towards the environment in their daily lives.”